JESSICA HYNES (Mrs. Jackson) A prolific writer and performer, National Youth Theatre alumni Jessica Hynes has become one of the leading lights of on-screen British comedy. She is perhaps best known for her frequent collaborations with Simon Pegg and director Edgar Wright, with the trio combining to create the BAFTA-nominated cult classic “Spaced”; before Hynes appeared in the zom-com hit “Shaun of the Dead”. She garnered acclaim and her second BAFTA nod for her performance in the Paul Abbott-penned “Tomorrow La Scala!”; before her portrayal of Siobhan Sharpe in first “Twenty-Twelve” and then “W1A” scored a long-overdue BAFTA win. Further notable credits include; “Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix”; “Son of Rambow”; “Cider with Rosie”; and television’s “The Royal Family”. Hynes is a two-time winner at The British Comedy Awards, and has also found success on-stage - nominated for an Oliver Award for her performance in “The Night Heron” and for a Tony Award for “The Norman Conquests”.
DANE HUGHES (John Walker)Portsmouth-based Dane Hughes is an up-and-coming young actor on the cusp of his sixteenth birthday. “Swallows and Amazons”marks his debut feature film role, as he takes on the key part of John Walker in Philippa Lowthorpe's big-screen adaptation of the Arthur Ransome classic. Off-screen, Dane is a keen rugby player and a passionate supporter of his beloved Wasps Rugby Club.
ORLA HILL (Susan Walker). “Swallows and Amazons” is 13-year-old Orla’s second feature film, following her debut in Paul Andrew Williams’ “Song for Marion”, which was made when she was nine. Orla played the part of Jennifer, the screen daughter of Christopher Eccleston and screen granddaughter of Vanessa Redgrave and Terence Stamp. Orla has also appeared in several short films. These include the title roles in the award-winning “Lily and the Revolution”, a comedy about a rebellious schoolgirl who tries to start a Communist uprising in her home village (University of Westminster, 2014), and “Poppy”, a piece in the style of Lynne Ramsay in which a daughter tries to come to terms with her dad finding a new girlfriend (London Film School, 2014). The youngest of six children Orla lives in Hackney, East London, where she was born, and attends a local state comprehensive school. She discovered her love of acting after joining the Saturday morning Anna Fiorentini Theatre and Film school, a social enterprise close to her home. As well as acting Orla enjoys dancing, swimming and making cakes. She now loves sailing too.
TEDDIE MALLESON-ALLEN (Tatty Walker). Ten-year-old Teddie Malleson-Allen is a young actress based in the West Country. Swallows and Amazons marks her second collaboration with director Philippa Lowthorpe, following her performance as Frances in last year’s acclaimed BBC adaptation of Cider with Rosie alongside Timothy Spall and Samantha Morton.
BOBBY MCCULLOCH (Roger Walker). Ten-year-old Bobby McCulloch is a rising talent based in Chichester on the UK's South Coast. Philippa Lowthorpe's "Swallows and Amazons" is his on-screen debut, as he takes on the starring role of Roger Walker; the exuberant youngest of the titular Swallows.
SEREN HAWKES (Nancy Blackett) is 15 and attends St John's College in Southsea, Portsmouth. “Swallows and Amazons” is her debut feature film. She is a very keen sportsperson and enjoys a variety of team sports. She is member of City of Portsmouth Athletics Club and particularly enjoys sprinting. Since starting filming for “Swallows and Amazons” she has also developed a skill for sailing. She is studying Drama GCSE and has enjoyed taking part in House Drama productions.
SEREN HAWKES (Nancy Blackett) is 16 and based in Southsea, Hampshire. “Swallows and Amazons” is her debut feature film. She is a very keen sportsperson and enjoys a variety of team sports. She is member of City of Portsmouth Athletics Club and particularly enjoys sprinting. Since starting filming for “Swallows and Amazons” she has also developed a skill for sailing. She is in her final year at St John's College, studying for her GCSE's, and she is hoping to further her education at Peter Symmonds College, Winchester, in September.
HANNAH THORP (Peggy Blackett) Is 12 years old and currently lives with her parents and twin brothers in the heart of the English Lake District. Hannah is an avid reader, her favourite authors being James Dashner, Susanne Collins and David Walliams. She is a great fan of comedy, she particularly likes artists such as Vic and Bob, Miranda Hart, Lisa Kudrow and Dan Skinner. She currently attends Tread drama productions where she has been involved in several regional theatre performances. “Swallows and Amazons” is Hannah's professional film debut. She is extremely excited to be involved. Hannah was cast following an open audition at her school. She is proud to be local to the Lakes and appreciates the importance of this film within the local area.
THE PRODUCTION TEAM
PHILIPPA LOWTHORPE (Director) is an award-winning director whose work can be seen both in film and on a number of leading British television shows. She was recognized with a BAFTA and a further nomination for her work on the much-loved “Call the Midwife”, also scoring nods at the National Television Awards and from the Royal Television Society. Her BAFTA made her the first ever female winner in the Best Director: Fiction category. Harrowing mini-series “Five Daughters” was recognized with the Jury Prize at the Raindance Film Festival, and was a success on the European festival circuit; while her recent BBC adaptation of “Cider with Rosie” with Timothy Spall and Samantha Morton has won stellar reviews. Lowthorpe has also gained further acclaim as a documentary filmmaker and producer, responsible for the likes of “A Childhood”; “Remember The Family”; “Three Salons at the Seaside”; and debut “Enniskillen: Splendid Hearts”.
ANDREA GIBB (Writer) is a Scottish film and television writer who in 2003 wrote the feature film “Dear Frankie” starring Emily Mortimer and Gerard Butler, which won the Women in Film and Television Script Award in 2004. In 2005 she was nominated for the Carl Foreman Award at the BAFTAs for her feature film “AfterLife”. Since then, she has worked on a range of projects, including adaptations of Vikram Seth's best-selling novel “An Equal Music” for Cuba Pictures and Raindog Films, Rose Tremain's “Music and Silence” for CMP Film and Arthur C. Ransome's beloved children's classic “Swallows and Amazons”. Andrea is also currently working on a number of adaptations and original projects for television including “More than This” for BBC Scotland; “GI Brides” for World Productions; and the adaptation of Emma Healey's award-winning novel “Elizabeth is Missing” for STV.
NICK BARTON (Producer). Nick Barton’s many producing credits include: numerous advertising commercials with Terence Donovan; then television documentaries and dramas, such as “The World A Television History” ( C4); “Spaceship Earth” ( C4/PBS); “The French Foreign Legion” for BBC TV; “Moving Story” (ITV); “Bye Bye Baby” (Film on Four); “Boswell & Johnson” (BBC); “The Wimbledon Poisoner (BBC); “The 7 Wonders of the World” ( for Discovery/ C4 ); “Vanishing Man” (ITV); and “Great Excavations/List Worlds” a major 6-part documentary series for C4. Harbour Pictures was created in 1999 to produce feature films. Having secured a first-look deal with Buena Vista International (the distribution arm of Disney), Nick produced his first feature film “Calendar Girls”, the huge no 1 UK Box office hit in 2003. He then produced “Kinky Boots”, his highly acclaimed film for Miramax Films in 2005 which was released in 2005/6. He has a number of other films in development and pre production. Nick has been a member of BAFTA since 1983.
JOE OPPENHEIMER (Producer) is Commissioning Executive at BBC Films. Having entered the film industry in 1995 following a stint at an internet start-up company; Joe spent his early years in the industry working as a writer and director, before making the move into development and production. He joined BBC Films’ development team in 1998, and has worked across the department’s creative output ever since, working across genres, and alongside some of the industry’s most notable figures. Oppenheimer boasts a wide range of film and television production credits, with highlights that include: “London Road”; “Man Up”; “Testament of Youth”; “Alan Patridge: Alpha Papa”; “Spike Island”; “The Awakening”; “Nativity”; and the internationally-successful hit series “The No.1 Ladies Detective Agency”. Further development credits include: “The Men Who Stare at Goats”; “Eastern Promises”; and “The Life and Death of Peter Sellers”.
NICK O’HAGAN (Producer). Getting his break as a production runner on “Roald Dahl’s Danny the Champion of the World”; O’Hagan has gone on to become one of Britain’s most prolific independent producers. He is known for having produced “Pandemonium”, nominated at the British Independent Film Awards; “Shadows in the Sun” with Jamie Dornan and Ophelia Lovibond; “Act of God” with Gugu Mbatha-Raw; and “Age of Heroes” starring Sean Bean. O’Hagan was co-producer of the recent Ben Wheatley J.G Ballard adaptation “”High-Rise”; the well-received “A Royal Night Out”; Jude Law-led “Don Hemmingway”; music documentary Festival Express”; and the award-winning “Young Adam” starring Ewan McGregor. Additionally, he has taken on line producer responsibilities on the likes of Dustin Hoffman’s acclaimed “Quartet” and “Hector and the Search for Happiness”.
JULIAN COURT (Director of Photography) has served as a cinematographer for over two decades, ably demonstrating an arresting and instantly-recognizable style. He is best known for his success within the television sphere, having been involved in a number of acclaimed British series over the years, garnering awards recognition for his work. Court has been nominated twice for a BAFTA for “Ripper Street” and “The Devil’s Whore”, and has two wins to date from the Royal Television Society’s annual awards. Notable television credits include: “Birdsong” with Eddie Redmayne; “Luther” with Idris Elba; “Grantchester”; and “Da Vinci’s Demons”. He has also shot commercials for a number of major brands, such as Dyson and McDonalds. This is Court’s third collaboration with director Philippa Lowthorpe, having previously worked together on both “Cider with Rosie” and “Jamaica Inn”.
DAVE THRASHER (Editor) has amassed over sixty film and television credits, since breaking into the industry in the late ‘80s. One of Britain’s most consistent and hard-working editors, Thrasher has left his mark on a number of award-winning projects. His work can be seen on the likes of “The Big Swap” and “Ghost of Greville Lodge”; and on television’s “Call the Midwife”; “Hustle”, “Tracey Beaker Returns”, and the popular Austen homage “Death Comes to Pemberley”. Thrasher’s early career saw him involved in the making of a number of acclaimed nature documentaries, including the influential “In the Wild”. He has worked with director Philippa Lowthorpe twice before, having previously collaborated on “Cider with Rosie” and “Jamaica Inn”.